How Long After A Break-Up Will It Take To Get My Ex Back?

Whenever I’m asked, “How long does it take to get my ex back?”, my heart sinks. Why?

Because every time we try to make love work in a specific way, at a specific time, in a specific sequence, it’s almost always certain that it’ll backfire on us — and I can’t tell you how many times I’ve seen it backfire on so many men and women.

You can not make love work on a schedule. You just can’t. You can create conditions and learn experience-enhancing skills, habits, traits or other behaviors that make love most likely to happen faster, but when love happens is ultimately out of your control.

This can be hard to swallow especially if you are so used to doing things at the pace you choose and at the times you choose for the results you want. Because you’ve always, by will power, hard work and determination made things happen, you can’t help but try to somehow force love to work on your schedule and do what you want it to do.

Occasionally you may succeed in manipulating a few things to work in your favour, but as you will soon find out, only temporarily. The harder you try to force love to work on your schedule and do what you want it to do the more stress, frustration and unhappiness you experience. In most case, all you end up doing is coming across as pushy, manipulative, controlling, desperate and needy.

Trying to force love to work on a schedule is what sometimes makes some people think that things are not working out even when everything is really working out the way it is supposed to. Many get discouraged and begin to lose hope, and others give up because it’s taking so long. Some give up just when they were closer than they were ever before.

Others take the drastic step of breaking up and cutting off all contact. On the onset this seems like regaining that sense of control because it somehow stops them from feeling the frustration with their current situation. But instead of feeling in control they find themselves thinking over and over about situations they have control over, and losing hours of sleep in search of that much needed but illusive “closure”.

And here is the tragic part. The way that you act and behave when things don’t go your way or when you don’t get what you want tells the other person what kind of person you will be like to live with (for the rest of their lives).  And since the greatest natural relationship killer is the fear of regret — something your behavior may already be causing — the other person will most likely want nothing to do with you after seeing you act pushy,  manipulative, controlling and/ or running away to hide instead of calmly facing the situation.

Let me say it again: You can not make love work on a schedule. The sooner you accept this simple truth the more likely that you’ll not only be able to salvage your relationship, but make it last for a very long time.

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  1. says: Pat

    My ex and I have strong feelings for each other but we decided to start by hanging out as “friends”. It was her suggestion and I went along with it. I had previously made the mistake of telling an ex that it is all or nothing and she moved on. Also I wasn’t there for my ex and I needed her to see that I had made positive changes in my life to better myself. To cut the long story short, we have decided to get back together. I know that this time things will be different and I am excited to start the new relationship.

    1. says: Love Doctor, Yangki Akiteng

      Congratulations Pat… 🙂

      … and thanks for sharing your story. I appreciate it. All the best!

  2. says: Gabe

    It’s very refreshing to find a site that has a positive take on breakups. For the first time, I think that my situation may not be so hopeless after all. She ended it end of January, but I was able to convince her not to breakup. That lasted for only two weeks. She sent me a text saying she could not do it anymore and needed space to find herself. I didn’t contact her for two weeks, and when I did, she didn’t respond. I left it for another two weeks and contacted her again, still no response. Another two weeks, and then i finally got a response. She said she misses me and still loves me but needs time. Given your experience in this matters, how do you suggest I approach this going forward? I do want her back and I’m willing to wait for as long as it takes.

    1. Give her the time she needs. From her response, the feelings are still there, and that’s usually a good sign. Whether or not you will get her back depends on if after she “finds herself”, she still wants to be with you. Give yourself the best chance by working on yourself as well, especially on those things that made he feel that she “couldn’t do it anymore”.

      Since she did not specify how much time she needs, and you did not ask, if she does not contact you within a month (which is the amount of time it took you to get her to respond the last time), reach out to her again. Don’t let too much time pass because “too much” time with no contact creates it’s own problems. The more time passes, the more emotional disconnection. Getting that connection back is not easy — and sometimes, it’s impossible.

  3. says: Bijo

    I agree with this article wholeheartedly. There’s no quick fix and don’t put a time limit on anything. Trust the process and grow with it. It is also important to stay focused on what is important to you, be realistic and flexible.

  4. says: Hamza

    Yangki, I bought your eBook because I’d done very many “VERY BAD THINGS” with my ex ); HAHA! I have to say though that it was the happiest I’ve been considering that I was diagnozed with depression at age 16 and I’m 43.

    Anyways, I just wanted to say that the book is very helpful. However, even though I’m applying the steps, I feel like things are not moving forward. Two weeks ago, she was very open and receptive and this week, she’s distant and not responding to my emails. I called her last night after not hearing from her for 4 days and she seemed happy to hear from me, but cut the conversation short because she had an important call to make. I don’t want to just to conclusions, but part of me feels strongly that there is someone else involved. How do I approach this situation? Ask her directly or simply ignore it?

    1. I didn’t mean it like that… lol. Geez Hamza, you’ve a VERY “dirty” mind. I’m not surprised that you’ve done very many very BAD things…lol.

      As you may have read in the book, the pull and push phase of the process happens in almost all relationships. Let it not discourage you.

      It’s possible that there is someone else, but it’s also possible that there’s no one and she’s just trying to find her bearing in all this. Until she says something to you that indicates there is someone else or comes out directly and tells you, bringing it up will make you look needy, not to mention jealous and possessive. Not good when she’s trying to make up her mind about you.

  5. says: Augustine

    First of all, I’m very impressed by the advice on your site. I’ve read advice on getting an ex back from many other sources and yours is the only advice that not only makes sense but actually feels right.

    My question is: In your experience what is the right time period to expect to get one’s ex back? Two, three months or longer?

    1. There is no “right” time period; it could be the next three months, the next week, or even the next few hours. A lot depends on the type of relationship, an ex’s willingness to be open to possibilities and if one is prepared and capable of refocusing one’s energy away from the uncertainty of the situation on to something one has some certainty about.

  6. says: Lorraine

    Lex, I’m in a similar situation of struggling with being hopeful and being at peace with the possibility that it might not happen. What’s helping me is not reading all the negative stories in other blogs and just focusing on my situation. I discovered that when I read negative stories I lose hope but when I’m being in my own place where I’m not allowing other people’s bad experiences to cloud my thinking, I feel at peace. I don’t know if this will help you. I just felt that I should share and may be it’ll help someone else.

    1. Lorriane, first of all thanks for addressing that part of Lex’s comment. Second of all, that’s one of the best pieces of advice I’ve read in a long while. It is possible to get sucked into the despair and the drama played out in the lives of others. Sometimes from others’ stories, the mind can start to create stories of our own which are far different from the reality of our situation… then using our own created stories (which may have nothing to do with reality) we frighten or discourage ourselves. This is the main reason we do not allow personal stories and rants on this blog.

  7. says: Musathegentlesoul

    There is a saying in the Tao, “Infinite patience brings immediate results.” This is the law of the universe, plain and simple.

  8. says: Chelsea

    This is very insightful. I’ve finally started realizing that sometimes it takes a little longer than one wants. I’m learning to be more patient, and it’s really reduced the stress pain and suffering in my life.

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